I have not used this fabric before and as I am now very well-versed with the pattern of the Cross Body Bag decided that it would be an opportunity to test out sewing with Faux Leather.
I purchased just ½ metre of Brown colourway from Fabricland, Salisbury branch. I discussed with the assistant what needles and machine feet I should use and she recommended “leather” needles and a teflon(R)-coated or “smooth” foot, alternatively an even feed/walking foot. As I plan to sew some “oilcloth” later, I purchased a smooth foot through eBay which will come in handy for that sewing project.
I found the cutting of pieces from the faux leather very easy and as it is backed with a fine jersey fabric did not feel the need to use fusible interfacing. For the lining I purchased a metre of Brown/tan printed cotton “Tuilleries Classically Home Collection” by Marianne Elizabeth for Benartex from Franklins. I applied the fusible fleece to the lining pieces and having done a quick stitch test on the faux leather, I was away.
I used a Brass twist lock fastener and all the other hardware was also in Brass. I finger- pressed the seams and top-stitched ¼ inch as directed in the pattern instructions with a slightly longer stitch length of 3.00.
For the strap I cut a piece 4 inches wide and once folded and top-stitched, due to the thickness, decided against the use of a strap adjuster. The only problem I had was when stitching the lining to the outer bag and trying to stitch over the strap tabs. At this point there were 10 layers of fabric! By going very slowly and hand-turning the flywheel I just about managed to stitch across at those points. However, once the bag was turned right side out when it came to top-stitching, I missed out the area where the tabs were set as that would have been just too much for the leather needle to cope with.
I have approximately half of the faux leather fabric remaining and plan to make a tote bag based on the same principles as the CBB (I.e. 3 panels per side) but with different dimensions, fastening and pockets – so not really similar at all!